What we’re following on social connectedness, trust, housing, and loneliness

A short list of articles, audio interviews, and studies on issues like social connectedness, loneliness, social capital, and social factors in COVID-19 suppression.

Here’s a roundup of what we’re reading and listening to. We hope you enjoy it. 

New Research: The Built Environment Impacts Our Health and Happiness More Than We Know

June 07, 2021
The Dirt (American Association of Landscape Architects)

Meeting the Multigenerational Moment 

An evolving multi-part series featuring stories about the “vibrant, if fledgling, movement to bridge generational divides… [] Written by a mix of social entrepreneurs, academic researchers, and philanthropic leaders, the series aims to demonstrate how fresh thinking and new social arrangements hold the potential to make the most of an increasingly multigenerational society.”

Though US focused, the issues and examples are all very relevant in Canada. There are already 13 articles in this series. Social connections and housing are topics featured in more than one article.

March 2021, continuing
Stanford Social Innovation Review

Interview with Ontario’s Oasis founder and researchers

This excellent interview with CBC Radio’s Matt Galloway (The Current) showcases the growing movement of NORCs (naturally occurring retirement communities) by looking at the example of Oasis, an expanding resident-led model for aging-in-place founded by Christine McMillan in Kingston, Ontario.

May 11, 2021
CBC, The Current

Researchers identify social factors inoculating some communities against coronavirus

A study examines how social capital — a measure of ‘networks, norms, and trust’ within a community — helps suppress spread of coronavirus.

February 19, 2021
Washington Post

How COVID-19 has made Canada’s underhoused and unequal communities impossible to ignore

November 19, 2020
The Globe and Mail

Dr. Vivek Murthy and Brené Brown on Loneliness and Connection 

This 60-minute podcast interview with two-time US Surgeon General (first under President Obama, reinstated by President Biden) centres on his 2020 book, Together: The Healing Power of Human Connection in a Sometimes Lonely World. Recorded in April 2020 when COVID-19 was in full first-wave swing, this thought-provoking conversation looks at the impact of loneliness on our health and social well-being.

And if you like the podcast, I can highly recommend Dr. Murthy’s book. It’s a wide-ranging look at the health and societal impacts of loneliness, written so beautifully that it’s that rarity in non-fiction: a drop-what-you’re-doing page-turner.

April 21, 2020
Unlocking US, Brené Brown